China invested $12-billion in Canada in 2012, placing ninth-highest in a ranking of foreign direct investment.
By contrast, the United States topped the list of major investor countries in Canada, dominating with $326.1-billion, or 51.5 per cent of the total, according to a study released Monday by the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada.
"Despite recent large inflows of Chinese investment, we cannot take for granted that Canada is an attractive destination for Chinese companies, whether state-owned enterprises or private companies," Vancouver-based foundation president Yuen Pau Woo said in a statement.
Mr. Woo said the scale of Chinese investment over the next decade will be huge. "Canada has to compete for its share, and this will require concerted effort from different levels of government as well as from the business community," he said.
The Netherlands invested $61.4-billion in Canada last year, or 9.7 per cent of the total, said the foundation, which conducted the study with the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade and Simon Fraser University's Jack Austin Centre for Asia Pacific Studies.
The United Kingdom ranked third on the list, followed by Luxembourg, Switzerland, Japan, Brazil, France, China and Germany.